Grassroots Uprising Against Gary Bettman’s Ugly Sweaters

A reader this week shared with us word of an online petition up and running to combat the NHL’s plan to jettison its time-honored sweaters for something markedly uglier, produced by Reebok, beginning next season. More than 1,000 have signed it, OFB signed it, and if you value the classic and distinctive look of our heroes on the ice as they battle now, we’d urge you to too.

It’s a tall order — little ‘ole fans uniting and thwarting the seven-figure (at least) investment by a corporate American behemoth, with the blessing of the NHL brass. But we’re mindful of grassroots campaigns besting the power structure in the recent past. Think Harriet Miers.

We were struck by the passion signatories published at the NHL Sweater Redesign Protest and thought we’d share samples of it with you:


“No GAY tight EURO Jerseys, Please!”

“Please stop messing with the game I love”

“I own 13 NHL jerseys, all of which cost well above $100. I will never purchase another if this goes through.”

“Wtf, these jersies are horrible. Looks like a women’s hockey league.”

“I have over 90 NHL jerseys in my collection. I’ve always loved NHL jerseys and aim to have a complete set — but I will not buy any of the new form-fitting jerseys. This is a disgrace and is destroying one of the most iconic forms of sports apparel in the history of pro-sports. I was concerned as soon as Rbk took over making jerseys last year — now I know my concerns were justified.”

“let something traditional remain with the league! what’s next? Rename the Stanley Cup to the (sponsor) NHL Championship Trophy? (Oh better not give you any ideas!)”

“The jersey is the only thing the Hawks have going for them these days.”

“if this happens, I wish death upon bettman.”

“Back away from the ‘Edit’ button Gary. You don’t know how to use it.”

Lori Beth: “Don’t do it, Hockey players for the most part are rather unattractive with the missing teeth, don’t put them in high pants and tight shirts tucked in, my eyes couldn’t take that horrendous fashion faux pas . . . the rest of society can do without that as well.”

“The worst idea since those god-awful Cooperalls. Fans should boycott any manufacturer that produces this crap.”

“If the redesign goes ahead as rumored, Reebok and the NHL will not get one thin dime from me — and I have a collection of over 150 NHL and other assorted hockey jerseys. This is a disgrace and I’m fed up with the NHL’s attempts to solicit “new” fans while demonstrating an utter lack of respect to the game’s heritage, as well as the fans who have filled seats and bought merchandize over the years. For shame.”

“Are wearing ties next?”

“Maybe you should start a new sport with a new name you can then mutilate.”

“I personally take this as an insult to all fans of the NHL and to the game of Hockey itself. I will not spend money on anything but a god honest traditional hockey jersey and I know most true NHL fans feel the same way. We came back after the lockout . . . but we will only put up with so much.”

“People are not getting any smaller it’s a plain fact!! . . . If you want to bring back the tight polyester look of the late seventies and early eighties you better keep it on the dance floor . . . Look around!! . . . The style these days is keepin it loose!! Look at the shorts in the NBA compared to the tighties of the 70s and 80s . . . Tight is not right!!”
“What’s next, skirts?”
“Even in Holland we don’t like this idea and will support the petition.”
“The form fitting Ladies Jerseys failed on the public sales side, this will too.”
“Bettman, Your a joke . . . Go Jump off a cliff you hockey ruiner.”
“touch the habs uniforms and die”
“Forget the jersies, fix the OFFICIALS!!”

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8 Responses to Grassroots Uprising Against Gary Bettman’s Ugly Sweaters

  1. The sad part about all this is the following quote from the petition:
    WE WILL NOT SIMPLY BUY PRODUCTS THAT ARE ASSOCIATED WITH OUR FAVORITE TEAMS BECAUSE THEY ARE DEEMED “NEW & FLASHY” BY THOSE HIGH UP IN THE NHL AND RBK HOCKEY!
    Unfortunately, time & again it turns out that fans do indeed buy new jerseys any time a team changes things up. Even with all the criticism of the new Buffalo logo, they’re among the hottest selling this fall.

  2. pepper says:

    Show me a more tailored “stars and stripes” Caps jersey. (Actually, that’s how it was in the 70’s.) As far as I’m concerned, the most necessary change is back to red, white, and blue for the Caps. Until then, I will seek out the vintage wear.

  3. pepper says:

    One other thing I wasn’t focused on – if indeed logos are ironed / screened on, rather than stitched, this is perhaps the biggest travesty of all (if true). This would very much diminish the collectability of game-worns, in my opinion.
    The fact that authentics, as opposed to replicas, were made of solid, stitched-on logos and patches were of primary importance to me and their ability to withstand the years. Who wants to buy a gamer that’s going to fall apart in a few years without being preserved in a sealed box?

  4. Charlie says:

    The RBK edge system could partly be blamed for the reason the Buffalo Sabres are wearing that Slug of a logo on their chest. Larry Quinn is the other guy to blame too.

  5. Joe says:

    The NHL has always sported the best, and most traditional uniforms in all of sports. The is absolutely no excuse for for the tampering that has taken place with the rules and look of this great sport. the officiating is a joke, and it seems as though hockey is becoming a non-contact sport, and what is with these new jerseys? They look like panzie roller hockey jerseys, not classic hockey sweaters. Bettman is a joke, and I will never buy one of these faggy looking jerseys in my lifetime. Please God, restore hockey to its origional state, more fighting, no shootout, lenient officials, and sweaters. BETTMAN, YOU ARE A JOKE AND WHAT YOU ARE DOING IS A SIN. DON’T EVEN THINK ABOUT TOUCHING THE JERSEYS OF THE ORIGIONAL SIX.

  6. I agree with the author of this post. Most of the major sporting events these days are FLOODED with advertisements, sporting apparel manufacturers, sponsors, etc. (I could go on and on and on..). I know that they are one of the main reasons why some major sporting events are still alive, however, It is just plain overkill, the commercialization of sports that is.

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